Reasons Not to Elope – Seeing through the misconceptions

A couple shares their first dance overlooking Sedona by large trees with the sun setting behind them.

The Five Most Common Objections To Eloping

(updated for 2024)

We often blog about reasons to elope, how to involve your family and what to expect from the experience of eloping to put out the positive vibes of choosing to elope. Today we are tearing down the false impressions of eloping and hatred found online about elopements. As elopement photographers, we witness first hand our couple’s wedding day up close and personal. We are there through it all with them and we get to capture some of the most special moments between two people and within their relationship. We have also photographed many weddings in our past and we find couples that elope have no different or less of a bond than those couples that choose to share a traditional wedding. As two people in the wedding/elopement industry, but also as people who care about humans and connection, it makes us upset that there are so many people online putting down the choice of eloping. Sometimes your battle may even be with your friends and family when trying to decide to elope or not. Let’s break down some of the most common things we hear about elopements when people are trying to convince you not to do it and why these are not valid reasons against eloping!

Choosing to elope is a big a choice to make. Eloping is not your traditional wedding day and while we believe deeply in the elopement experience, we completely understand that it is not for everyone. The above reasons are typically said to people wanting to elope because of a certain family member or friend wanting to attend your wedding for their own personal reasons or because that person doesn’t understand the modern day elopement. If you are thinking about eloping but are getting some back lash from friends or family, you can always share with them photos of other elopements that display epic-ness, happiness, adventure, fun, connection, love and all of the beautiful reasons that you yourself have been drawn to holding your ceremony in this way. You can also share blog posts with them that talk about what an elopement is, why people elope and past elopement stories. This can help bring clarity and understanding to them. Being totally transparent about why you yourself want to elope can also be beneficial. Having captured hundreds of love stories, we can confidently say that you should not make your own wedding day choices based on the opinions of others.

Reasons Not To Elope

With the five most common arguments presented by family and friends dispelled above, there are legitimate reasons why a couple may choose to have a traditional wedding instead of an elopement. To us, the connection between a couple and them fulfilling their dream wedding day is the absolute most important decision when it comes to deciding how they’d like to get married. Are we partial to the big outdoor adventures with solitude in pristine wilderness, snow capped mountain peaks, fields exploding with wild flowers, backpacking weddings, rock climbing weddings, and sunshine the whole day through? Yes, of course we are! That’s why we have dedicated our lives to helping couples bring their dream elopement to life and capturing the memories. But within the same sentiment for why we are so passionate for what we do, that means we also encourage couples who want to have an elopement styled wedding do so for the right reasons.

I’ve always dreamed of the big traditional wedding

If you have always dreamed of the big fancy wedding with the dances, the coordinated color schemes and you enjoy being the center of attention then do not force yourself to have a wedding day different than your dreams.

Elopement images look so cool

If the big sweeping vista shots you see with the glowing sunset are what appeal to you about eloping but absolutely nothing else, have a traditional wedding and you can always do a honeymoon session or anniversary session later down the road. Eloping is not about the photos, it is about the experience.

Eloping is quick and easy

If you want a wedding that is quick and easy, elopements are certainly quicker and easier to plan with less stress but that shouldn’t be the main reason that draws you to sharing your ceremony in this way. Also, every elopement photographer is different. For us we focus on adventurous weddings, so that is certainly not always easy. Some of our couples really push their boundaries and we love being along side them experiencing it all. This all circles back to we believe in the couple fulfilling their wedding day vision. There are many reasons why a couple might want a quick and easy wedding day, so for that we recommend the courthouse, a county park, or a very beautiful and accessible area that will satisfy those needs.

Elopements are trendy

A decision that is as important as swearing your love and life to another person should not be made on the whim of something seeming like a cool thing to do. Your wedding day will be a memory that will last forever. It is important to make sure eloping aligns with your values and will be an accurate reflection of your love story.

I could never get married without all of my friends and loved ones

This one is important to be honest about. To some people, spending tens of thousands of dollars to host a celebration to ensure every person of importance both small and big can be present on the wedding day is a non-negotiable. This is very area specific and we capture love stories all across the United States, but as a common thread, any more than 15 people can be very difficult to fit on public lands. Once you start breaking into the 30 person guest count and beyond, then it becomes almost necessary to book a private space or venue. Aside form amphitheaters, which typically don’t photograph well and they are rarely in ideal locations within a park, there are limited and rare spaces on public lands which can hold large gatherings.

I don’t want my dress to get dirty

Yes, you could carry around a blanket and hoist your dress up high while you walk around between locations, making sure the dress sits just perfect for every photograph, but then it starts to feel more like a photo shoot than a wedding. When we capture elopements, we pride ourselves on delivering an experience and worrying the entire time about some dirt on the dress will surely detract from that. We aren’t saying that you need to go down natural rock waterslides and jump into a creek in the tropics while wearing your dress like this couple did during their Puerto Rico Elopement (which we’re all about), but you should expect the dress to gain a bit of dirt on the ends while you’re exploring in nature. If keeping the dress in pristine condition is important to you, then you might want to consider not eloping.

A couple plays a game of chess on top of a red rock overlook.

Bring along an elopement team that will stand behind you and your dream wedding!

We believe that eloping is the most connective, intimate and adventurous way to start off your marriage. Sometimes it is hard to find the words to truly express what we see in front of our camera on elopement days with couples. There is a sense of peace, love, connection and wholeness shared between the couples. Eloping is the most unique way to say I do because you can design a day that is perfect for just the two of you. There is an elopement ceremony as the stable and glowing center piece, but the entire rest of the day is curated to match your exact vision. This could be a day with just you two hiking to the mountain top before sunrise to share your vows at the start of a new day or it could be the two of you and a few close friends and family sailing across the sea. Eloping can be anything you want it to be. Choose to elope for your right reasons and don’t let others opinions influence your dreams. If you are considering eloping, but not sure or have questions reach out to the photographer you are considering and ask away! Always feel free to drop a question in the comments of the blog post too, We always answer them!

Modern day Elopements are not the same as they used to be and should stop carrying the stigma.

It is our passion helping couples begin their married life together with a day that perfectly fits them and their relationship by providing a safe, non-judgmental space for couples to celebrate their day. From connection to capture, we’ll be with you every step of the way.

a bride and groom stand together with the milky way behind them and mount rainier with their headlamps on.

Hey there! That’s us! We’re Traci and Bill. Like it says above, we believe that getting married, just like your relationship, should be rooted in what really matters. The moments of passion that create our deepest drive. Those instances we share with our partner where we know we’ve found the perfect person for ourselves.

When deciding on how to go about planning a wedding or an elopement, it should be built on the same principles of a powerful partnership. If anyone else is trying to convince you otherwise, they’re missing the big picture. And the big picture specific to any relationship is the story that you and your partner share. We’d love to support you on this next step of your journey together in kicking off your marriage in the most unforgettable way possible!

We’d Love To Hear About Your Vision For Your Wedding Day!

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